As usual every evening I watch the news at Belgian TV. But what I have seen last night was far better than the series "Prison Talk" ! This guy is a felon who was arrested 5 years ago for aggravated battery, burglery and drug dealing and had still more than 8 years to do. But last year, during a medical visit at hospital, he managed to escape and were searched for all over the country and outside.
For an unknown reason he decided that life in liberty wasn't that nice and he was better in prison. So he presented himself at the door of a prison in Verviers (a french speaking town in the south of Belgium). As he was not in possession of his identity card, the prison's employes refused to let him in and send him away. ( for those who don't know, in Europe except the UK you should always carry your identity card with you, so that everybody knows who you are and where you live). But that wasn't all, they suggested him to go to the city administration and get his papers in order.
The guy was initially incarcerated in Gent, a dutch speaking town, and as he had decided to go back to prison life, he didn't want to go back to a dutch speaking prison, but prefered a french speaking one. (Yes even amongst felons the "language" war exists apparently)
During his escape, the fugitif had been arrested twice, once because he had no car insurance papers and once during a police control in December. Each time he was released. Apparently nobody wanted him while looking for him all over the country.
The director of the prison explained to the press the reason why the prisoner had not been let in : "We never have seen this person, because he wasn't incarcerated here. We had no possibility to identify him because he had no papers and then, everybody could pretend that he was him and we would be accused to arrest an innocent, and anyway our prison is full and we have no space for eventual intruders" !
The Belgians who have a lot of humor call these insolite happenings "Belgian Tales" and are laughing about themselves. There are many others and maybe I should write about some more.
This really happened yesterday.